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News Around the Net!

WOW — Vince Gilligan is reportedly working on a Breaking Bad movie?!  And it will apparently be set after the events of the series, telling the story of Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul)’s life after escaping from the Neo-Nazis in the series finale?!  That is huge news.  Will this ever actually happen?  Will this be a theatrical release or a TV-movie?  Stay tuned…

In other big news, Disney has announced that in addition to Jon Favreau’s upcoming Star Wars live-action TV show, The Mandalorian, they’re also working on a show featuring Cassian Andor, with Diego Luna reprising his role from Rogue One!  I have mixed feelings about this.  On the one hand, I’m super-excited for these upcoming Star Wars shows and their potential to further expand the Star Wars universe.  Diego Luna was phenomenal in Rogue One, and I’m excited to see more of him.  And I love the idea of a show set in the time period between Episode III and Episode IV.  The reign of the Empire is a ripe period for lots of great stories.  On the other hand — AARGH, yet ANOTHER Star Wars prequel??  Look, as I just wrote, I am all for new stories set between Episode III and IV, and I’d love to see Diego Luna pop up as Cassian in those stories.  But I think it’s a big mistake to make Cassian the main character of a new long-running TV show, considering we already saw him make the most important decisions of his life, and meet his end, in Rogue One.  This feels like yet another example of Star Wars eating its own tail and retreading old ground rather than moving forward and telling new stories with new characters.  I hope I am wrong about this!!  I am rooting for this to be great.

Speaking of TV show spin-offs from beloved movie franchises, Disney has just confirmed the rumored Loki TV show, with Tom Hiddleston reprising his role.  Here too, I am rooting for this to be great, but I’m a bit doubtful.  Mr. Hiddleston is amazing as Loki, but can the character really carry his own show?  Also, I’ve been burned before.  The Marvel CBS shows, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and then Agent Carter, were billed as in-continuity expansions of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  But the quality was low (the two short seasons of Agent Carter were OK, but Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was terrible and quickly lost my interest), and the Marvel movie and TV folks quickly split due to internal disagreements, and the series’ didn’t wind up being connected to the movies in the ways fans had originally hoped.  The Netflix Marvel shows also began in continuity with the movies, but that faded just as it did from the CBS shows, and after knocking the doors off with the tremendous first seasons of Daredevil and Jessica Jones, the quality fell dramatically here too.  This new Loki show, and others planned for Disney’s streaming service, are theoretically being made under the auspices of the Marvel movie folks, so will these actually wind up being more connected to the Marvel Cinematic Universe?  More importantly, will they be any good?  I’m eager to see…

Like many, I was saddened by the passing of Stan Lee at age 95.  Wow, he had just about convinced me that he was immortal!!  It’s hard to imagine a world without Stan Lee.  Step back and consider how much of today’s pop culture was created by Stan Lee and his circle of collaborators (such as the great Jack Kirby).  He’s had an astounding impact on our culture.  Lots of reactions from the comic book community and beyond can be found here.  And here is a fantastic tribute to Stan by Brian Michael Bendis, beautifully illustrated by Bill Walko.

Here’s a look back at all of the many great Stan Lee movie cameos.  (We now live in a world without additional new Stan Lee movie cameos!!  So sad!!)

Click here for a wonderfully in-depth look back at Hellboy 2: The Golden Army.  I loved this film when it came out — I am overdue for a rewatch!

Click here for a fascinating look back at Ralph Bakshi’s animated Lord of the Rings, which I remember very fondly from seeing as a kid.

OK, the idea of a theatrical release of a re-edited, PG-13 version of Deadpool (which was originally rated R) is not of much interest to me.  However, I am intrigued to discover that they have apparently filmed new scenes featuring Fred Savage, in what looks to be a parody of The Princess Bride!  That is such a gloriously bizarre idea that I must admit that my interest is piqued.  UPDATE: Here’s a trailer!

How funny is Fred Savage in that trailer??  I mean, come on.  He’s so good that he almost, almost makes me think about buying a ticket to see this.  I’m not going to, but I will say I watched that trailer three times to enjoy Fred Savage.  Well done, sir.

True Detective season three is really happening!  (Four years after season two!)  And we have a fantastic-looking trailer!

Like almost everyone, I was captivated by season one (though slightly let down by the ending).  Season two was a step down in quality, though I liked it a lot more than most everyone else.  I am excited for the series’ return, and I am delighted that season three stars Mahershala Ali.

Here’s the first teaser trailer for Toy Story 4:

Wow, a reboot of The 4400 is in the works??  Really?  Did anyone other than me watch that show?  The sci-fi series ran for four short seasons on USA.  I loved the premise (basically exploring what happened to all those abductees after they wandered dazed off the alien spacecraft at the end of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, with no time having passed for them), and it had a strong cast.  (It’s where Mahershala Ali — who I just mentioned in the above paragraph is starring in True Detective season three! — got his start.)  And I was excited that several great writers from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, my favorite Trek show, were involved.  (René Echevarria co-created the show, and for much of its run Ira Steven Behr was the show-runner.)  But the series never really took off or reached the quality I was hoping for.  It’s hard to believe this obscure property is actually going to be rebooted, but stranger things have happened.

DC Comics is currently publishing a series called Doomsday Clock, which brings the characters from Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons’ Watchmen into the main DC universe.  (It’s a somewhat blasphemous idea, though I must admit that so far the execution, by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank, is incredibly top-notch.)  A clever fan has produced a fun trailer for a Doomsday Clock movie, mashing together scenes from the Watchmen film adaptation with clips from Justice League and other recent DC movies.  It’s a fun watch (though it’s too long — I’d had enough after 2-3 minutes):

I’ve linked to this before, but man, this tribute to Star Trek at the 2018 Creative Arts Emmys hits me right in my Trek-loving sweet spot.  Skip the “humorous” intro (and also the speeches at the end), and just watch the tremendously-well-made clip package that runs from 1:50 to 4:50.  What a beautiful salute to fifty-plus years of Star Trek on TV…

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